The volume of aluminum in global vehicle manufacturing supply chains has been rising almost since the first cars rolled off a production line. This trend is set to accelerate in the coming years, driven by several factors.
Global sales of electric vehicles surged 63 percent in 2018 to 2 million — a figure predicted to increase sevenfold by 2025. By 2030, total global EV stock is expected to reach up to a staggering 200 million.
Given EV manufacturers' imperative to reduce vehicle weight in order to offset the heavier battery and maximize energy efficiency, designers and engineers in unprecedented numbers have been reaching for aluminum, triggering an explosion in demand. Its superiority as a lighter-weight alternative to steel is so significant that every 2.2 pounds of aluminum used in a car has been found to reduce the overall weight of the vehicle by 2.2 pounds.
Nor do EV manufacturers value aluminum just for its lighter weight. Automakers have long been using the metal in bumpers, and Tesla uses 0.3-inch bulletproof aluminum alloy sheets to protect its battery compartment and guarantee safety at speeds of up to 120 mph.